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Old 01-15-2013, 02:24 PM   #1
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Update on Columbus 320RS

I've had my Columbus since just after Thanksgiving, so I thought I'd post an update on how I'm doing with it after living with it a bit.

Things I dig -

Seems to be holding the heat just fine. The insulation and seals are great, and the dual panes are a must-have. Bonus is the sound level inside is very quiet.

The bathroom is perfect for me. The layout is fantastic considering it's basically a 6'x6' square. The shower is huge and the 10 gallon hot water heater is more than enough for long showers. I can wash my face in the sink and not hit my head on the medicine cabinet! There is actually counterspace to place a few items!

The stackable washer/dryer is another must have. It does a good job and is very quiet. After I added a king pin support ($75), it doesn't shake the whole coach.

The kitchen is working out very well. Love the island and space it provides. Also been using the convection microwave. Wasn't a fan of these things until I started using it. I have re-arranged where I store alot of my cooking stuff a few times trying to optimize it. I have ALOT of stuff, but I think things are in good shape now. Love the deep sinks and counterspace around it. Doing dishes is easy as there is room for a full size dish drainer.

The reclining theater seats. Love, love, love it to watch TV. Don't even use the couch.

The HiSense LED TV's. This is turning out to be a good brand. They made a big splash at CES this month and are making a big push into the US market. Picture is fantastic, colors great, very bright. Think they are better than the Samsungs and Sharps I have at home.

The Winegard Traveler Satellite dish. This thing has been working great. Push one button to set it and forget it.

Things that are a bummer, man -

Fit and finish on the interior is excellent, but some things are somewhat fragile. The shiny corian countertops can scratch easily. I had to fix alot of imperfections and nicks in the cabinetry with a wax touchup stick. Looks good now, but when I first got the unit, you'd think the cabinets were installed by monkeys.

My furnace failed after 3 weeks. It now goes thru the initial blower cycle and then stops, doesn't fire. Thankfully I got the heat pump option and had a space ceramic heater and the electric fireplace. I've stayed warm, but it's a PITA to fix a furnace with snow on the ground.

The closet has the metal thing to hold your hangers in instead of a rod. I guess the idea here is that it holds things in place while you are going down the road. But it's a pain when you are parked! I'll probably yank out this POS and install a rod.

I see no good reason for the island to be a rolley cart. It should be fixed in position (bolted to the floor) so you don't have to secure it. You can't really use the kitchen or living area with the slides closed, so I see no purpose in it being moved to the back of the RV.

The slide out pantry in the island literally fell to pieces on my first trip. I glued all the parts back together, and use it to store lightweight dry goods for now. I need to contact Palomino and get replace parts for this. These drawers should probably be made from a hardwood and not the ash it appears to be, since most folks are putting their can goods in there.

Steps to the upper deck are hard wood. They are good looking, and seem to be holding up just fine, but they are very slippery under socked feet. I'll probably put some kind on non-skid stickers on them.

If I could do it over again, I'd not get the carpet in the hallway and bedroom area. It's not really a good quality and will probably wear out quickly. For now I have a few throw rugs up there to try and preserve it for as long as I can. The beauflor in the rest of the coach is a wood-grain and I like it as I track in a lot of mud and dirt. Seems to be holding up fine and is easy cleanup.

The fridge space is OK for me, but the freezer is too small. A bigger refer was not an option in this model. I'll probably get a small freezer or chest and put it in the basement.

That's it! I declare the Columbus as fine for full-timing.
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Old 01-15-2013, 03:16 PM   #2
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A good summary of "actual living in it".... for those new to 5th wheels-or-any other Rv... these are the facts, once you bought it.- right?
Walking thru it with a salesman on your heels isn't really getting a feel for your future home !
I learned from you that the island that has wheels needs to be moved to the back and strapped down before you travel... I was impressed with an island, but (YA!!) that isn't mentioned when we are looking at new Rvs to buy.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:11 PM   #3
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Thanks for the excellent recap. We've looked at the Columbus products and really liked the initial impression, but when we looked deeper, it did not seem to have the durability we wanted (we had been to the Excel and New Horizon factories and were somewhat biased). But for the money not a bad deal, and they do have a lot of room off the MSRP to negotiate. When we finalize our purchase and try it out a bit, we will post a similar report.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:02 PM   #4
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I just ordered a 365Rl. What did your pin weight end up being when loaded?
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:26 AM   #5
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We ordered a 320RS will be in in 6 to 7 weeks.
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:51 PM   #6
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Wincrasher - did you get your furnaced fix yet? I know there is still snow on the ground in parts of Pa. Hope you got it fixed already or hope you can get it fixed w/o too much trouble.

You have to be in mild shock going from SC back to PA. Spring comes late in that neck of the woods.
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:56 PM   #7
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It just started working again shortly after I mentioned it - don't know why, but it gives me more time to deal with it. By plugging the interior intake vents in the kitchen, I was able to keep the trailer toast warm with just 2 space heaters and the fireplace. So that gives you an idea how well these things are insulated.

I burned thru alot of gas before I figured out how I can use the heat pump unitl itgets down to 30.
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Old 10-01-2016, 01:44 PM   #8
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We have been using our 320 for a few trips, stayed in it one winter while finished remodeling our house and now have it in TN were we are redoing a mountain house. Very nice unit and holding up well.
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